Toward an Integrated Model of Intercultural Competency

Evidence from American and International Students in the United States

  • William Scott Hinson
  • Po-Lin Pan Pan


In an increasingly globalised world, the study of intercultural competency is of great importance. Intercultural competency was first proposed by researchers in the 1950s (Hoselitz, 1954). According to Martin and Nakayama (2004), intercultural communication competency is “the ability to behave effectively and appropriately in interacting across cultures”. In the United States university system approximately 5 percent of students are international students ((Zhao, Kuh, &Carini, 2005). According to the Institute of International Education (2011), the total number of international students in the United States rose to 690,923 during the 2009/2010 academic year. Interaction between American students and international students, however, is often very limited. Research has shown that international students tend to spend their time with other international students. Likewise, American students spend their time with other American students (Pederson, 1991). This issue not only leads to fewer opportunities to increase intercultural competency, but it also causes a barrier in international students’ adjustment processes (Flaherty &Stojakovic, 2008).

Author Biographies

William Scott Hinson

William Scott Hinson is an Instructor of Speech Communication in the College of Communications and of English as a Second Language in the International Center for English at Arkansas State University, USA. He obtained his Master of Arts from Arkansas State University. His research focuses on intercultural competency, cross-cultural marriage, and interpersonal communication across various social and cultural contexts.

Po-Lin Pan Pan

Po-Lin Pan is an Assistant Professor of Radio and Television in the College of Communications at Arkansas State University, USA. He obtained his PhD from the University of Alabama. His research investigates telecommunication effects, communication technologies and social interaction, and international communication.

How to Cite
Hinson, W., & Pan, P.-L. P. (2019). Toward an Integrated Model of Intercultural Competency. The Journal of Development Communication, 23(2), 12-29. Retrieved from